Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) began in 1925 as a form of theological education that takes place not exclusively in academic classrooms, but also in clinical settings where ministry is being practiced. CPE is offered in many kinds of settings: in hospitals and health care including university, children’s, and veterans’ facilities; in hospices; in psychiatric and community care facilities; in workplace settings; in geriatric and rehabilitation centers; and in congregational and parish-based settings. The textbooks for CPE include in-depth study of “living human documents.” By “living human documents,” we mean both the people who receive care as well as a study of ourselves, the givers of care. Through the practice of ministry and reflecting on that practice with supervisors and peers, the experiential learning that is the heart of CPE takes place.
More about the history of CPE can be found at ACPE’s Website: http://acpe.edu/WhoWeAreHistory.html